(Updated from September 2015.)
The last few weeks of that summer weren’t the greatest for me. As my family went outside to take advantage of our dwindling number of days to use the outdoor grill, we brought everyone. Muffin hadn’t been terribly excited about exploring grass just yet; he was rather more frightened of it. Polecat has always been happy to roam the yard. 12-year-old White Fang just wasn’t in the mood to battle humidity or the threat of thunderstorms. And I…well, I’m an adult, and I’m just too busy with other, more important things than sitting outside. Right?
So very wrong.
We placed Muffin in the grass nearest the patio, and sat with him in the shade, the texture and the smell and the green of the grass as unfamiliar in some ways to me as it was to him. The memories came back to me pretty quickly; for him, it was about forming new memories. Before too long, he wasn’t nervous; he pulled a strand or two of grass out of the ground, and even tried to eat it, a sure sign that he was comfortable.
Furness joined us, too, joyfully rolling around and stretching out his paws and playfully batting at my bare feet. The Little Man was delighted at kitty being so near — he and kitty tend not to keep such close company. White Fang, who’d almost always rather be doing something other than engage in simple pleasures, was content to just sit with his brother and the cat, and revel in the moment.
And me…the ever-busy, ever-important-tasked adult…I got to just sit in the grass, with my family, in the breeze on a warm day, and wait while my husband did the cooking.
I got to feel the grass on my skin, and watch the cat play at my feet, and see the baby wave his chubby little hands, clutching a stray leaf…and realize that this is so much more important than a lot of what I regularly think is important.
That evening, White Fang commented that he hadn’t seen me “that relaxed” in “months.”
Yeesh. I hope not months. But I fear he may be right.
Everyday life seems a lot more complicated than it used to be. More than it should be.
We all need to take time to just sit in the grass, and remember what life is supposed to be about.